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Whitbread plc, the United Kingdom’s largest hotel and restaurant group, serves 11 million customers each month at its 2,000 outlets. The company’s key brands include Premier Inn—the U.K.’s largest hotel chain with 48,310 rooms—and Costa Coffee—one of the country’s biggest coffee shop businesses, with 1,375 stores. Whitbread’s strategy is to grow shareholder value by doubling in size over five years through equity, joint ventures, and partnerships in the United Kingdom and overseas.
Whitbread needed to develop and rapidly deploy a scalable, affordable, best-practice financial management system, while eliminating the need for a large, up-front technology investment. The company wanted to roll out new joint ventures globally as part of its “Whitbread out of the box” strategy. In addition, Whitbread wanted to minimize start-up overhead for joint venture partners by building a world-class financial solution that is cost neutral.
Whitbread commissioned Oracle Consulting to create a global, replicable financial management blueprint using Oracle’s managed cloud services—and applications, such as Oracle Financials On Demand, Oracle Procurement On Demand, and Oracle Purchasing On Demand. Oracle’s expertise, commitment, and flexibility enabled Whitbread to deploy a solution in 12 months and go-live for each new venture within four months. With the implementation, Whitbread acquired robust and accurate financial data to support business decision-making. The company can now better analyze profitability at a property location and country levels, and understand key metrics—such as labor, food, drink margins, and utility costs—to support its business growth decisions.
To ensure consistent global support and service levels while gaining the scalability to manage growth in user numbers, Whitbread outsourced its solution management to Oracle’s managed cloud services. By outsourcing solution management, Whitbread benefitted from predictable per-user costs without needing an upfront investment, reducing cost of ownership for its financial solutions by 20% over eight years.
Whitbread plc chose Oracle’s managed cloud services—such as Oracle Financials, Oracle Procurement, and Oracle Purchasing—to realize predictable, per-user costs without the need for upfront investment. The solutions also enable Whitbread to optimize system performance through regular upgrades, refreshes, and patch downloads.
Whitbread used Oracle Consulting’s expertise and extensive overseas resources to further reduce costs. In addition, Oracle’s flexibility enabled Whitbread to build a template capable of meeting statutory financial requirements for countries as diverse as India, China, and the Middle East with minimal customization.
“Oracle’s managed cloud services are highly reliable and easy to maintain and support. We now have absolute confidence in our infrastructure, back up, and patching. The new system also simplifies user implementation in new markets, enabling us to deliver consistent service internationally,” said Bob Wilde, head of international systems, Whitbread plc.